Guest Tutorial: Connecting Unity 3D Pro and VDMX by Syphon with Alejandro Crawford

For this guest tutorial we are joined by Alejandro Crawford, the visualist for MGMT (among others), in which he'll show us one part of the setup he uses for creating his live visuals by connecting a scene rendered in the powerful 3D gaming engine Unity to VDMX using the Syphon protocol to pass video back and forth between the two different programs.

To begin, download the Syphon for OpenGL Unity add-ons by Brian Chasalow or the Metal based Syphon add-on from Keijiro which include a template Unity project with the resources needed for publishing and receiving video feeds from other applications to use as a starting point. With the provided scripts the output of the Main Camera in Unity can be made available as a live feed in VDMX where it can be processed and mixed with other sources.

Once you've got the hang of using Syphon, check out some of the other ways to connect Unity to Mac VJ software, such as add-ons for receiving OSC messages from VDMX data-source providers.


Notes and Tips:

Download the Syphon for Unity add-ons and templates by Brian Chasalow.

Download the Syphon for Unity add-ons and templates by Brian Chasalow.

The “SyphonServerTexture” script makes the Main Camera in Unity available as a VDMX source.

The Syphon Output plugin in VDMX publishes video layers to use in other applications.

Add planes and other shapes to display video feeds from VDMX in your Unity scene.

Apply the “SyphonClientTexture” script to planes and configure the input settings.

A Quartz Composer composition in VDMX displayed on a Unity video plane.

During a live show Unity is just one of the many feeds that Alejandro feeds into VDMX during the course of a performance – custom Jitter patches, AR Drone cameras, and multiple Kinects are all brought together along with techniques like video feedback loops which were used for the Alien Days visuals.

Alejandro's VJ rig, MIDI, cameras, and software all routed through VDMX.

3D Dragon Fly scene in Unity with video plane from VDMX in the distance.